President Barack Obama had a Halloween to remember back in 2009, the same time the fledgling Tea Party movement was alerting the nation to Beltway waste and fraud.
The new book “The Obamas” by New York Times correspondent Jodi Kantor spills fresh dirt on a Oct. 2009 costume ball which included “Alice in Wonderland” star Johnny Depp and the film’s director, Tim Burton.
The event was kept from the public by the transparency-loving First Family for political reasons, Kantor says.
The book reveals how any official announcement of the glittering affair — coming at a time when Tea Party activists and voters furious over the lagging economy, 10-percent unemployment rate, bank bailouts and Obama’s health-care plan were staging protests — quickly vanished down the rabbit hole.
“White House officials were so nervous about how a splashy, Hollywood-esque party would look to jobless Americans — or their representatives in Congress, who would soon vote on health care — that the event was not discussed publicly and Burton’s and Depp’s contributions went unacknowledged,” the book says.
However, the White House made certain that more humble Halloween festivities earlier that day — for thousands of Washington-area schoolkids — were well reported by the press corps.